Veterans Day observances were held around the state Wednesday, although new restrictions to prevent COVID-19 meant a change of plans for some.
In Brunswick, the city’s new Veterans Plaza was dedicated in a quiet ceremony that was not open to the public.
Maj. General Douglas Farnham of the Maine National Guard was there to speak. He alluded to Civil War hero Joshua Chamberlain who noted that Maine men entered the conflict voluntarily to support the “principals” and “ideas” of the country.
“The percentage of Maine residents who have served the armed forces is one of the highest of any state in America. Mainers have sacrificed in every conflict for our nation. Today we honor them. This Veterans Plaza not only honors your veterans, but also provides a reminder to all of us of these ‘ideas’ we swore to defend,” he said.
The plaza was a community effort stretching over four years, with more than $500,000 being raised in its support by crowdfunding, the city of Brunswick, veterans and members of the community.
The keynote speaker was retired Command Sgt. Maj. Gretchen Evans, a decorated veteran of Afghanistan, who has recently moved to Brunswick, and also retired Rear Adm. Jan Cody Gaudio of Spruce Head.
U.S. Sens. Susan Collins and Angus King sent remarks by video.